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3/26/2007
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AMD DASH'es Hardware Management With Testing Tools

The new interoperability testing tools, codenamed Simfire let designers test programs to make sure they write to a specification in the way it was intended.

Advanced Micro Devices on Monday introduced new open-source tools for software vendors so they can check whether their hardware management systems are compliant with the latest distributed computing specifications.

A working group with the Distributed Management Task Force (DMTF) last week approved a Web services-based specification for managing hardware, whether desktops or mobile devices, from software consoles. The specification, DASH, which stands for Desktop and Mobile Architecture for System Hardware, is designed for accessing computers in which the operating system has crashed, or the machine is in sleep mode.

The new interoperability testing tools, codenamed Simfire, make it possible to simulate DASH-enabled hardware. "These tools help you to test and make sure you've written to the specification in the way it was intended," Margaret Lewis, director of commercial solutions for AMD, said in an interview.

Management software does not talk directly to the hardware's processor. In the case of disabled computers, such as those covered by DASH, the software communicates with the Ethernet controller -- such as those built by Broadcom. Nevertheless, AMD was a member of the DMTF working group, and hopes to drive adoption on the specification in order to meet customer demand for the use of more standards within their IT systems.

"We consider this a very key effort," Lewis said. "Our customers want easier manageability for commercial clients."

The new tools are based on an open test framework, called the Open Test Manager, which is part of the Open Web Services for Management project. The tools are available for down through the Open WS-Management site.

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